Sri Lanka among most vulnerable

The Economist Magazine has ranked Sri Lanka amongst its most vulnerable states that have been worst affected economically by the coronavirus pandemic, as Colombo faces massive debt repayments this year.

In its ranking of 66 states, using four ranking factors, Sri Lanka was ranked 61st place. It only placed higher than Angola, Lebanon, Bahrain, Zambia and Venezuela.

Trinidad and Tobago has been ranked as the 15th strongest emerging economy amid the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to London-based publication Botswana tops the list of countries with the strength of its indicators while Venezuela is the weakest.

The Economist ranked 66 countries using four indicators of financial strength. The rankings show which countries are in distress, and which are relatively safe.

“Our ranking examines 66 economies across four potential sources of peril. These include public debt, foreign debt (both public and private) and borrowing costs (proxied where possible by the yield on a government’s dollar bonds). We also calculate their likely foreign payments this year (their current-account deficit plus their foreign-debt payments) and compare this with their stock of foreign-exchange reserves. A country’s rank on each of these indicators is then averaged to determine its overall standing,” it said.

According to the publication, COVID-19 hurts emerging economies in at least three ways: by locking down their populations, damaging their export earnings and deterring foreign capital.

It said even if the pandemic fades in the second half of the year, GDP in developing countries, measured at purchasing-power parity, will be 6.6 percent smaller in 2020 than the IMF had forecast in October. (The Economist)

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